Friday, July 22, 2011

Recycle used clothing at charity thrift shops

A number of packages went out of our ministry center when it was in operation. This paled in comparison to the volume of clothing that we sold. Some of the clothes were sold to individual customers. We tried to put as much out on the floor as possible but sometimes there just wasn't space.

At times, there was a lot more clothing coming in than going out. When this happened we would put the overflow in the back room and pack it in trash bags as tightly as possible. They would wait until a bulk reseller that we worked with could pick them up.

Ministry Center photo Hope for Healing.Org
Selling bulk clothing had its own challenges. The reseller would not pick it up until we had a full truck load. Then each group had to be weighed. This was an arduous task. We looked for floor scales for sale but didn't have any luck.

We worked it out by weighing each bag on a set of bathroom scales. Then, we added up the weight and settled on a price. Most often, it was .05 per pound. That wasn't much but it helped. What gave us the warm fuzzies the most was the fact that most of the clothing was bound for overseas. We were told that this process helped make clothing available and more affordable in other countries.

Unfortunately, the economic situation claimed our reseller and then our ministry center. High gas prices made it necessary to move tractor trailers full of clothing instead of pick-up truck sized loads. Only large thrift shops can move that kind of volume. Fortunately, they do and that's part of what helps keep them in business.

If you have clothing don't throw it away. Please take your usable items to a thrift store near you.